This paper reviews the conditions of in vivo mastication and describes a novel method of measuring in vitro wear. Methods: parameters of intraoral wear are reviewed in this analysis, including chewing force, tooth sliding distance, food abrasivity, saliva lubrication, and antagonist properties. Results: clinical measurement of mastication forces indicates a range of normal forces between 20 and 140 N for a single molar. During the sliding phase of mastication, horizontal movement has been measured between 0.9 and 2.86 mm. In vivo wear occurs by three-body abrasion when food particles are interposed between teeth and by two-body abrasion after food clearance. Analysis of food particles used in wear testing reveals that food particles are softer than enamel and large enough to separate enamel and restoration surfaces and act as a solid lubricant. In two-body wear, saliva acts as a boundary lubricant with a viscosity of 3 cP. Enamel is the most relevant antagonist material for wear testing. The shape of a palatal cusp has been estimated as a 0.6 mm diameter ball and the hardest region of a tooth is its enamel surface. pH values and temperatures have been shown to range between 2-7 and 5-55 °C in intraoral fluids, respectively. These intraoral parameters have been used to modify the Alabama wear testing method. © 2013 IOP Publishing Ltd.